Ultimate Trade Test Introduction

Andy’s trades of Hee Lee and Frank Inououe  a few seasons ago made me stop and think about the nature of trading and the effect it can have on a team. With every deal that’s made, at some point or other someone will stop and ask “was it really worth it ?” In this entry, I will attempt to answer that question by tracing the history of trades made by current owners here. To do so, I’ll start with the season the owner in question entered FYC and follow the chain reaction up to now to see what you gave up then versus what it’s giving you now.

For example, one the first trades I ever made in FYC: Trading Pedro Nieto & Toby Rice for Fernando Nieves & Victor Martinez

Recieved Traded Away
Fernando Nieves (S24-29)

Donald Maduro (S29-current)

Victor Martinez (S24)–> i released him then

Pedro Nieto (S24-current)

Toby Rice (S24-current)

What I gave up is finite: Nieto & Rice’s future ML production; what I get out of it can be traced a little farther: in S29 Nieves was part of a deal that landed me Donald Maduro, so Maduro’s contributions to my success (or lack thereof) can ultimately be traced back here. Once I’ve followed each chain to the end, I’ll do some math using Wins Above Replacement to see if the trade hurt/helped. In the above scenario:

[ (Nieves’ ML WAR S24 to S29) + (Maduro’s ML WAR S29 to now) + (Victor Martinez’s ML WAR in S24) ] – [ (all of Pedro Nieto’s ML WAR following the trade) + (all of Toby Rice’s ML WAR following the trade) ] = value of this trade to Sioux Falls.

 Essentially, what I’m doing is the same thing that Grantland did with their MLB Transaction Trees  and assigning Wins Above Replacement values to each step in the process.

I will produce one post per owner, and start with the shortest-tenured ones so that it doesn’t take me forever and a day. If you would like to help out, please let me know.

I’ve tweaked this a little bit, and created a spreadsheet summary of the UTTs with the following categories:

  • FYC “Finished Trades” → see below
  • WAR Received → Wins Above Replacement received from the trade (Finished Trades only)
  • WAR Traded → Wins Above Replacement traded away in the deal (finished trades only)
  • Net Trade WAR → (WAR Received)-(WAR Traded)  ***Finished Trades only
  • Net WAR per Trade → (Net WAR) / (# of Finished Trades)
  • FYC “Pending Trades” → see below

****NOTE: an owner listed in red text is not a current member of FYC

To make things easier for myself, and to speed up the production process, I’ve created two categories of trades, finished and pending. I’ve included examples below:

This is boogerpride’s first trade in FYC. It falls under the “completed” category because he is no longer benefitting from it or being hurt by it. Put another way, all players involved are no longer earning ML Wins Above Replacement for or against him.

***NOTE: Free Agents and Minor Leaguers obviously don’t earn any ML Wins Above Replacement, but I still count trades involving them as “pending” due to the possibility that they could return to the ML and begin earning WAR at any moment.  

Season 18 w/Pawtucket: Received John Hyun for Houston Prior

Recieved Traded Away
John Hyun (S18-20) ? WAR Houston Prior (S18-26) ? WAR **Retired
  • Hyun left as a Free Agent before S21. He would return as a Free Agent in S22 and stayed until his S26 retirement, but that is not connected to this trade.

This is one of his most recent trades. It falls under the “pending” category because at least one of the players involved is still earning Wins Above Replacement at the major league level:

Season 32 w/St. Louis: Received Dennys Snavley for Eric Booker and Yasiel Flores

Received Traded Away
Dennys Snavley (S32-now) Eric Booker (S32-now) **Minors

Yasiel Flores (S32-now) **Minors

  • Snavley remains on the roster



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